Swallows


Rob Hofberg
 

Hi All -

 I just had a large, circling flock of swallows right over our neighborhood at 6:15 this evening. They looked like cliff swallows, but in the fading light and the altitude I could not be certain. There were about 40 of them. 

Rob Hofberg


Dave Compton
 

Hi Ron,

I appreciate your caution. Cliff Swallows are quite rare at this time of year, even for a single bird. For those who follow the LA County email list, you'll see there was a report of nice size flock of Violet-Green Swallows today. Kimball Garrett responded to the report by noting this species is well-known for being absent to nearly absent in migration earlier in the fall, but much more common later in the fall (October and November), especially with the passage of cold fronts. Tree Swallow flocks can occur in Santa Barbara County at this time of year, even relatively large ones, but not so much on the south coast. I would the suggest the order of likelihood for flocks of swallows in Santa Barbara at this season is:

Violet-Green Swallow
Tree Swallow
everything else (note that Lehman's The Birds of Santa Barbara County also mentions Barn Swallow flocks occasionally occur at this time of year on the north coast).

Ron, I didn't see the birds, of course, so can't say what they were. But hopefully, this info helps to think what they might've been.

Dave Compton
Santa Barbara



On Mon, Oct 18, 2021 at 6:21 PM Rob Hofberg <rhofberg@...> wrote:
Hi All -

 I just had a large, circling flock of swallows right over our neighborhood at 6:15 this evening. They looked like cliff swallows, but in the fading light and the altitude I could not be certain. There were about 40 of them. 

Rob Hofberg


Jim Hodgson
 

Hi all,

At 11ish this morning there was a large mixed flock of White-throated Swifts and Violet-green Swallows over Lake los Carneros with the swifts out numbering the swallows.  Mixed in were two Tree Swallows and one Rough-winged Swallow.  Also the Solitary and Pectoral Sandpipers were present.

Jim Hodgson
Santa Barbara

On Oct 18, 2021, at 6:44 PM, Dave Compton <davcompton60@...> wrote:

Hi Ron,

I appreciate your caution. Cliff Swallows are quite rare at this time of year, even for a single bird. For those who follow the LA County email list, you'll see there was a report of nice size flock of Violet-Green Swallows today. Kimball Garrett responded to the report by noting this species is well-known for being absent to nearly absent in migration earlier in the fall, but much more common later in the fall (October and November), especially with the passage of cold fronts. Tree Swallow flocks can occur in Santa Barbara County at this time of year, even relatively large ones, but not so much on the south coast. I would the suggest the order of likelihood for flocks of swallows in Santa Barbara at this season is:

Violet-Green Swallow
Tree Swallow
everything else (note that Lehman's The Birds of Santa Barbara County also mentions Barn Swallow flocks occasionally occur at this time of year on the north coast).

Ron, I didn't see the birds, of course, so can't say what they were. But hopefully, this info helps to think what they might've been.

Dave Compton
Santa Barbara



On Mon, Oct 18, 2021 at 6:21 PM Rob Hofberg <rhofberg@...> wrote:
Hi All -

 I just had a large, circling flock of swallows right over our neighborhood at 6:15 this evening. They looked like cliff swallows, but in the fading light and the altitude I could not be certain. There were about 40 of them. 

Rob Hofberg